Astoria Financial has set a December date for its annual meeting this year—something the bank never expected to do.

The $15 billion-asset Astoria has a pending agreement to be acquired by the $49 billion-asset New York Community Bancorp in Westbury. The deal was announced in October and was initially expected to close in this year's fourth quarter.

While shareholders approved the combination in April, regulators have not yet given their blessing, something the companies apparently expected would have happened by now. That puts the fourth-quarter closing date in jeopardy.

That also means Astoria, of Lake Success, N.Y., needs to hold an annual meeting during this calendar year, as required by the New York Stock Exchange. Astoria had not planned on having an annual meeting in 2016 since it had expected that the deal would have closed before Dec. 31, at which point Astoria would have ceased to exist, said Theodore Ayvas, director of investor relations.

Ayvas declined to comment on the timetable for receiving regulatory approval for the deal. New York Community could not immediately be reached for comment.

Astoria's annual meeting has been scheduled for Dec. 21. Shareholder proposals for the yearly proxy are due by Sept. 9, according to a regulatory filing. If the merger closes before Dec. 21, Astoria will cancel the annual meeting, Ayvas said.

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